Echinacea 'Sunrise'

Echinacea sunrise    Perennial of the Month-- February 2007 

(eh ki NA see uh ) (pronunciation at link, turn up volume if too low)

Common name: Sunrise coneflower

Family: Asteraceae, Aster

Height x width:  24-36 x 18-24in.

Growth rate: moderate

Foliage: dark green, 4-8" long, coarse with stiff hairs, serrate edges, alternate, simple, often clasp the stem

Flowers: 3-4" diameter, midsummer, opening dark yellow fading lighter ray flowers, slightly reflexed (pointing down); central cone of disc flowers starting green turning gold

Hardiness: USDA zones 4-8

Soil: light loamy but tolerate most well-drained; drought tolerant once established

Light: full sun

Pests and problems: none significant; occasionally fungal leaf spots, virus, mites, aphids, thrips; may attract beneficial soldier beetles in late summer so don't harm them

Landscape habit, uses: borders, meadows, native gardens, wildlife gardens, cut flower; combines well with other coneflower cultivars, dayliliy, Russian sage, black-leaved snakeroot, 

Other interest: about 6" taller than 'Sunset', from the Big Sky TM series in 2005 of Itsaul Nurseries in Atlanta, GA; a cross between purpurea and paradoxa; species are wildflowers native to the eastern U.S. ; very attractive to butterflies, bees, birds in fall (seeds);, genus name from prickly lower stem resembling a hedgehog (Latin echinos), genus is popular for medicinal use from vitamin C supplement to colds to other attributed uses, good cut or dried flower (cone); good winter effect

Other culture: tolerates light shade but weaker plants with fewer flowers; seldom needs division; avoid high fertility to avoid legginess; may self sow

Propagation: patented, so from licensed propagators commercially

Sources:  many complete retail perennial nurseries and online

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